Improper Loading of Semi-Trucks

Did you suffer injuries in an accident due to the improper loading of a semi-truck? The aftermath of such an accident can be overwhelming, but you don’t have to face it alone. At Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer, we’re here to offer the support and guidance that truck accident victims need. Our team has the experience to handle your case effectively and fight for your rightful compensation.

Contact our Phoenix truck accident attorney now for a free, no-obligation initial consultation. Let an experienced truck accident lawyer help you move forward during this challenging time.

Understanding Semi-Truck Loading Standards

Semi-truck loading standards exist to prevent accidents caused by overloading, poor weight distribution, or unsecured cargo. 

For starters, trucks should not exceed a maximum weight limit. Staying within this limit maintains the truck’s stability and ensures that the brakes can effectively stop the vehicle within a safe distance.

Secondly, loaders must distribute cargo weight evenly. Uneven distribution can cause a truck to tip over during turns or when navigating curves. 

Finally, trucking companies must secure cargo properly. This prevents items from shifting or falling off the truck, which can result in accidents or road blockages.

Adhering to these standards is not just about following the law. It’s about protecting lives. Truck drivers, loaders, and trucking companies are all responsible for ensuring that every load meets these essential safety criteria. If they fail to do so, they can be liable for truck accidents that occur as a result.

The Risks of Improper Loading of Trucks

The risks of improper truck loading are significant and numerous. 

Improper loading can cause cargo to shift or fall off of a truck, making the vehicle harder to control. This can result in the truck crashing into other vehicles or flipping over. It also increases the chance of items falling onto the road, creating hazards for other drivers, who might swerve to avoid them and wind up causing further accidents. 

Moreover, overloading a truck puts undue strain on its mechanical components, making it much harder for the driver to stop quickly. This can easily lead to collisions, especially on busy roads.

How Improper Loading Causes Accidents

Improper loading can turn a standard delivery into a potential hazard for all road users. Here are several ways in which improper loading can contribute to devastating truck accidents:

  • Shifting Loads – One common cause of truck accidents is when the load inside a trailer shifts unexpectedly. This can happen if loaders do not secure the cargo correctly. A shifting load can throw off the vehicle’s balance when a truck changes lanes or turns. This imbalance can cause the driver to lose control, potentially leading to a rollover or collision with other vehicles. 
  • Overloading – Another common issue is overloading a truck beyond its weight limit. Commercial trucks have specific weight capacities to ensure safe operation. When loaders exceed this limit, it puts extra pressure on the truck’s tires and brakes, making it harder for the driver to stop and maneuver.
  • Underloading – Interestingly, underloading a truck, particularly with liquid cargo, can also pose risks. If loaders do not fill tanks to the appropriate levels, the liquid can slosh back and forth during transit. This movement can significantly affect the truck’s stability and handling. In severe cases, the driver might struggle to maintain control, leading to swerving or jackknifing.
  • Improperly Secured Cargo – Cargo that loaders have not secured properly poses a direct threat to safety. If cargo breaks free during transit, it can fall onto the roadway, creating obstacles for other drivers and leading to multi-vehicle accidents. Furthermore, sudden weight loss can alter the truck’s handling, surprise the driver, and possibly cause a loss of control.

Determining Liability in Accidents Caused by Improper Loading

Depending on the circumstances surrounding the loading process and the chain of command, various parties might bear responsibility for a truck crash due to improper loading. Examples of parties that could be liable for such accidents include the following:

  • The Loading Company – Often, separate companies are responsible for loading cargo onto trucks. If a loading company does not follow proper loading procedures and causes an imbalance or inadequate cargo securement, they can be responsible for resulting accidents.
  • The Truck Driver – Truck drivers are responsible for inspecting their loads before and during transport. If a driver fails to check the load properly or ignores obvious signs of improper loading, they can be liable for accidents that result.
  • The Trucking Company – The trucking company that owns the vehicle and employs the driver can also be responsible. If the company does not provide adequate training on load inspection or encourages drivers to bypass safety checks to save time, it can be liable for resulting accidents. 
  • The Manufacturer of Loading Equipment – If an accident occurs because the loading equipment is defective, the manufacturer of that equipment might be at fault. This can include faulty securing devices or malfunctioning loading machinery that leads to improper loading.

When you contact our legal team, we can assess your case to determine who may be responsible for your improperly loaded truck accident.

Legal Recourse for Victims of Truck Crashes Due to Improper Loading

Victims of truck crashes caused by improper loading have the right to seek legal recourse. This means they can take action to hold the responsible parties accountable and seek compensation for the personal and financial harm they suffered. 

The first step in this process involves hiring a knowledgeable lawyer with experience handling truck accident cases. Our legal team can gather evidence to prove the crash resulted from improper loading, such as inspection reports, cargo manifests, or witness statements.

The next step is to file an insurance claim or lawsuit against the loading company, the truck driver, the trucking company, or any other party responsible for the improper loading. Victims can recover compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, and related expenses through the claims process.

How Our Phoenix Truck Accident Lawyer Helps People Hurt by Improperly Loaded Trucks

At Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer, we help people injured in truck accidents due to improper loading by:

  • Investigating the accident scene to gather useful evidence
  • Consulting accident reconstruction experts to understand how the crash occurred
  • Reviewing the truck’s loading and shipping documents for any discrepancies
  • Interviewing witnesses who saw the accident or the loading process
  • Identifying all potential parties liable for the accident
  • Negotiating with insurance companies to ensure fair compensation
  • Filing a lawsuit on your behalf if necessary

Are you dealing with the aftermath of a semi-truck accident caused by improper loading? At Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer, we’re here to handle your case with the attention it requires and demand the compensation you deserve. Contact our semi-truck accident law firm today for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn how we can help.